Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Monsters, Inc. - Conor Mihell

Rating: **

This article was a good read but i found there wasn't much info on the experience of paddling or building a 65-foot canoe, it was mainly about the inspiration to build it. To be clear that would make it the biggest canoe in North America. James Van Nostrand had no ambitions to design and build this huge canoe when asked by an outfitter in form Prince Rupert, British Columbia.

James had previously designed 20+ boats but had doubts that the proposed 65-foot pacific Northwest-style canoe could possibly work. He thought such a monster canoe would be way too hard to paddle and turn. He thought it was impossible to paddle it comfortably, but he didn't give up just yet. He started to research other big canoes and went to the museum of civilization here in Ottawa. There he saw the 57-foot Haida canoe and studied pictures of it. He knew if you could paddle on 57-foot canoe, you could paddle on a 65-foot canoe. He then drew sketches and got a group of builders together.

After a six-week period ending in January 2010 the 80-inch "Han'da'wit'waada" or "the boat that brings people together" was painted by a first nations artist and ready to propel groups of 48 people along the northern coast in British Columbia with maximum speed of 48 horsepower. Today tourists from around the world come for the paddling experience on the monster. Han'da'wit'waada is one canoe i wouldn't want to portage.

Mihell, Conor. "Monsters, Inc." Canoeroots online magazine (June 2011 issue). May 24th 2011. Page 19. http://www.canoerootsmag.com/canoerootsmag_spring11/

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